Sierra Leonean Govt Arrests Ex-president’s Guard Over Failed Coup


The Sierra Leonean government on Tuesday said it has arrested one of the main organizers of an attempted coup which occurred on November 26, and two alleged accomplices.

These arrests by the government bring to 60 the number of people arrested since these events, the vast majority of them military personnel.

“One of the organizers of the failed November 26 coup attempt, Amadu Koita, who was at the top of the wanted list, was arrested yesterday (Monday) at 11:30 pm” (local and GMT), Information Minister Chernor Bah told a press conference in Freetown.

A former military officer and bodyguard of Sierra Leone’s ex-president Ernest Bai Koroma, Amadu Koita was widely followed on social networks, where he criticized the government of President Julius Maada Bio. He was sheltered by a policewoman and a policeman, who were also arrested, the spokesman said.

In the early hours of November 26, men attacked a military armoury, two other barracks, two prisons, and two police stations, confronting security forces with weapons drawn.

The fighting left 21 people dead, including 14 soldiers, a policeman, a prison guard, a security guard, a woman, and three assailants, according to the Minister of Information.

Since 2020, the West African region has been marked by an increasing number of coups d’état, in Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, and Guinea. On Saturday evening, Guinea-Bissau President Umaro Sissoco Embalo also denounced an “attempted coup” following clashes between the army and elements of the security forces on Thursday night.